1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP+) has been previously shown to act as a selective neurotoxin towards dopaminergic neurons in mesencephalic cell cultures. L-deprenyl, a monoamine oxidase inhibitor, has been suggested to protect mesencephalic cultures from neurodegeneration induced by MPP+. This study examined the effects of 10uM and 100uM MPP+ on fetal rat mesencephalic and cortical cultures in the presence and absence of 10uM deprenyl. The relative health of cell cultures was assessed by tyrosine hydroxylase immunohistochemistry, observation by light microscopy, and MTT toxicology. Although cells exposed to 10uM MPP+ for 24 and 48 hours appeared healthy, treatment with 100uM MPP+ produced non-specific neurodegeneration in mesencephalic and cortical cultures. Exposure to 10uM deprenyl did not appear to protect cultures from neurotoxicity induced by 100uM MPP+. These findings do not support the notion of deprenyl as a protective agent against MPP+-induced toxicity.
Melena Bellin, ’99 Brooklyn Park, MN
Major: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Sponsor: Barbara Christie-Pope